The volume contains critical editions of the extant parts of two hitherto unknown theological works by the
Būyid vizier al-Ṣāḥib b. ʿAbbād (d. 385/925), who is well known to have vigorously promoted the teaching of
Muʿtazilī theology throughout
Būyid territories and beyond. The manuscripts on which the edition is based come from Cairo Geniza store rooms. They consist of two manuscripts for each of the two texts—testimony to the impact of al-Ṣāḥib’s education policy on the contemporaneous Jewish community in Cairo. The longer treatise of al-Ṣāḥib of ca. 350/960, possibly his
Kitāb Nahj al-sabīl fī uṣūl al-dīn, appears to be the earliest
Muʿtazilī work preserved among the Jewish community. The second, briefer treatise also contains a commentary by ʿAbd al-Jabbār al-Hamadānī (d. 415/1025).
al-Radd al-jamīl attributed to al-Ghazālī (d. 1111) is the most extensive and detailed refutation of the divinity of Jesus by a Muslim author in the classical period of Islam. Since the discovery of the manuscript in the 1930’s scholars have debated whether the great Muslim theologian al-Ghazālī was really the author.
This is a new critical edition of the Arabic text and the first complete English translation. The introduction situates this work in the history of Muslim anti-Christian polemical writing. Mark Beaumont and Maha El Kaisy-Friemuth argue that this refutation comes from an admirer of al-Ghazālī who sought to advance some of his key ideas for an Egyptian audience.
Acknowledged as a leading medical expert in his day, and secretary to a succession of caliphs in the mid-ninth century, the Nestorian Christian
ʿAlī ibn Rabban al-Ṭabarī converted to Islam around the age of 70. He then wrote
Radd ʿalā l-Naṣārā, a recantation of his former faith, and
Kitāb al-dīn wa-l-dawla, a defence of the Prophet Muḥammad based substantially on biblical proof-texts. The range of arguments he produced against the soundness of his former faith in these two works influenced sections of Islamic scholarship for many centuries.
These new editions and translations of his works are based on all the available evidence for the texts, accompanied by extensive introductions and studies of their place in Islamic thought.
From the eighth to the tenth century A.D., Greek scientific and philosophical works were translated wholesale into Arabic.
A Greek and Arabic Lexicon is the first systematic attempt to present in an analytical, rationalized way our knowledge of the vocabulary of these translations.
Naṣīr al-Dīn Ṭūsī’s (d. 672/1274)
Nasirean Ethics is the single most important work on philosophical ethics in the history of Islam. Translated from the original Persian into Arabic in 713/1313, the present text was primarily intended for the Arabic-speaking majority of the people in Iraq. A fine example of medieval Persian-to-Arabic translation technique, this first edition carefully reproduces Middle Arabic elements that can be found throughout the text.
The short Latin treatise
De curis puerorum is the translation of a lost Arabic original attributed (perhaps mistakenly) to the famous al-Rāzī (Rhazes); one of the rare texts on pediatrics circulating in the Middle Ages, it was so popular that it was soon re-translated into Hebrew, not once but three times! Gerrit Bos and Michael McVaugh have edited the Latin and Hebrew texts, accompanying them with an English translation and a full commentary situating the original Arabic against the medical writings available to tenth-century Islam. The contents of the work range remarkably widely, covering skin diseases, eye and ear infections, teething, vomiting and diarrhea, constipation, worms, and bladder stones, among other things, outlining their causes, symptoms, and possible treatments.
The medical compendium entitled
Zād al-musāfir wa-qūt al-ḥāḍir (
Provisions for the Traveller and the Nourishment for the Sedentary) and compiled by Ibn al-Jazzār from Qayrawān in the tenth century is one of the most influential medical handbooks in the history of western medicine. In the eleventh century, Constantine the African translated it into Latin; this translation was the basis for the commentaries by the Salernitan masters from the twelfth century on, and was popular in Jewish circles as well, as is attested by the fact that it was translated into Hebrew three times. The current volume covers Book 7, chapters seven to thirty of Ibn al-Jazzār’s compendium. These chapters cover a wide variety of external afflictions such as measles and smallpox; bites and stings; rabies; tumours; warts and calluses, leprosy, scurf and eczema, pruritus and scabies, furuncles, scrofula,
sharā and heat rashes; fractures and dislocations; haemorrhages caused by a sword, knife or arrow; whiteness of the nails and paronychia; burns; wounds caused by pressure from the shoes; and fissures in the hands and feet.
In this volume, Gabriella Elgrably-Berzin offers an analysis of the fourteenth-century Hebrew translation of a major eleventh-century philosophical text: Avicenna’s
Kitāb al-Najāt (The Book of Salvation), focusing on the psychology treatise on physics. The translator of this work was Ṭodros Ṭodrosi, the main Hebrew translator of Avicenna’s philosophical writings. This study includes a critical edition of Ṭodrosi’s translation, based on two manuscripts as compared to the Arabic edition (Cairo, 1938), and an appendix featuring the section on metaphysics. By analyzing Ṭodrosi’s language and terminology and making his Hebrew translation available for the first time, Berzin’s study will help enable scholars to trace the borrowings from Todrosi’s translations in Jewish sources, shedding light on the transmission and impact of Avicenna’s philosophy.